Spring garden maintenance complete and front boulevard planted

I’d like to thank everyone who stopped by to express their condolences on the loss of Chris’ cousin who was a very good friend of ours. I was supposed to be in another city and attending the visitations today, but I got really sick yesterday and our car broke down. So I’m home tonight … Chris can’t even drive back to pick me up as our car hasn’t been repaired yet. You can read a more detailed explanation of what happened on my main blog if you’d like.

So on to garden related stuff …

Last week, in preparation for Green Thumb Sunday, I went out into my yard and took pictures of most of the plants that were either coming up or that were blooming.

The garden looks very nice this year. Chris and I spent two days last weekend cleaning up the garden – trimming plants, getting rid of dead foliage, pruning roses and putting some compost that we picked up at a local park on Saturday thanks to Toronto’s Earth days’. (That’s a green recycling program where the city gives back the compost from the green garbage and other yard related wastes it’s picked up the year prior).

Needless to say my back took a beating and ached for a few days after I over did it in the garden. The effort payed off though as we had cooler temperatures and some rain last week and that really perked up the garden. Since the beds were tidier I could really see how my plants were progressing.

IMG_3325 Now you might remember a post I made about a month ago. It was the one where I showed photos of our front yard still covered in snow and photos of our planted boulevard that I had spent the day cleaning up.

Well the front boulevard looks even nicer now! I planted some peonies that I’d purchased in early April as well as some Dahlias, Gay Feather and a few other plants to go along with the plants that have been growing there for a few years (iris, daylilies, malva, salvia, tulips) and we placed our short bamboo fence in front of it to finish off the look and protect the garden from the teens that like to stand outside my house talking before they go their separate ways after school.

This is what it looks like now:

IMG_3640

and from another angle:

IMG_3642

Just to give you a complete picture of how the front garden looks I’ll throw in a photo of the front flower beds too:

IMG_3637

Now most of my plants are in the backyard. In a day or two I’ll post some photos of how the backyard garden looks right now and maybe a few photos of what’s blooming.

I hope your gardens are doing well right now!






Share and Enjoy

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Google Plus
  • Google
  • YahooBuzz
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

Hens and Chicks in the garden

Join Green Thumb Sunday
Join

IMG_3384

When we first moved into our house it had a garden, but not a great garden. It had a lot of weedy plants that spread throughout the garden and even into the grass. I can’t remember the name of this simple green leafed plant, but it was everywhere and it’s notoriously invasive.

Other than the weedy plant that took about four years to completely get rid of, there were mainly veggies, rhubarb, raspberries, strawberries, lilies and what appeared to be a fairly young apple tree and pear tree – planted in the middle of the yard!

I know I’ve got a few pictures of what the garden looked like before we started landscaping, but I think they’re on my other computer. Anyway … you can probably picture it. It was pathetic!

At the front of the house, beside our very narrow driveway there’s a very small garden bed. This was filled with hens and chicks. They were straggly as they were trying to grow in a very shady area.

When I was planting new plants in my newly created raised garden beds in the spring of 2002 I moved most of the hens and chicks to the back garden beds. As you can see from the photo above they are thriving in the sunny backyard. Click on the photo for a larger view if you’d like – the larger photo is quite nice.

The Hens and Chicks (Sempervivum), particularly in this especially sunny area have spread out and grown into the crevices of the interlocking stones. They look lovely … even better after I’ve picked out the dead leaves and mulch that get stuck in them over winter!

As for that very shady garden bed? Once I removed the hens and chicks I planted shade loving plants like Bleeding heart, lily of the valley, a fern, hosta and in a less shady area a Stella D’ora daylily, plus a few other plants.

Actually, I spent some time today adding new plants to that small flower bed and later today I’ll be planting more plants (that I purchased two weeks ago!) in the front boulevard. I’ll tell you what I planted in a new post once I’m finished the job. Hopefully I’ll have a few photos too.

In the meantime … if you want to see an older picture of what my back yard garden looked like in July of 2003 – one year after most of the plants had been added to the garden, here you go:

wideview2

The garden has matured quite a bit since that time and I’ve managed to add more plants! Oh and I’ve moved a few around too. So it looks similar … but different … better maybe.

Gardeners, Plant and Nature lovers can join in every Sunday, visit As the Garden Grows for more information. GTS participants remember to check in at As the Garden Grows each week so that we’ll know you made a new post!

Share and Enjoy

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Google Plus
  • Google
  • YahooBuzz
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

Chinodoxa or Glory of the Snow

It’s been a beautiful week here in Toronto. The plants in my garden have shown their appreciation of the warm weather by growing and growing and growing some more!

Chionodoxa

The Chionodoxa, Glory of the Snow, is blooming. One day the plants were just short little green leaves, the next a few tiny buds had appears and then the following day the Chionodoxa had grown several inches and were blooming. I’ve got white ones, bluish ones and pink ones blooming in several clumps throughout the back garden.

The Chionodoxa in the front garden beds aren’t blooming yet. That area only gets late afternoon sun so it will probably be another week before they begin to bloom. The tulips in the front beds have really grown in the last day or so though.

I don’t see many people talking about Chionodoxa or Glory of the Snow as they are more commonly called. I wonder if they aren’t a very popular spring flower in many areas? If they aren’t it’s a shame because they are very easy to grow and as you can see from the photo I’ve included above they produce lovely clumps of flowers in the spring garden.

Here’s a little more information about this lovely spring flower:

Latin Name: Chionodoxa luciliae, C. gigantea
Common Name: Glory of the Snow

The species originated in Asia Minor and propagates by offset bulblets. These spring flowering bulbs requires a warm (60 to 70F) – cool (20 to 30F) – warm (35 to 55F) annual thermoperiodic cycle.

Depending upon the area, these bulbs will bloom anywhere from February to April.

If you purchase bulbs for planting they should be 4/5 to 5 cm and up in circumference. Plant in the fall, one inch apart, at five inches in depth.

These flowers are hardy to USDA zone 3 with mulch, and zones 4 to 7 without mulch.

Requires – full sunlight AM or PM sunlight, 25% shade.

Tolerates – summer drought, but requires adequate moisture throughout the growing season.

Look for these bulbs in your local garden center or nursery when Fall bulbs are being sold.

I planted most of mine in 2002 and they’re still going strong so I’d say this is a long lived and or self- propagating plant for most gardens. Mine are growing at the edge of my flower beds as they are relatively short plants that only grow to at most 6 inches in height.

Glory of the Snow are perfect for rock gardens, beds, ground covers, lawns, and woodland gardens. Some companion that Chionodoxa goes well with are Chaenomeles japonica, Forsythia, Jasminum nudiflorum, Helleborus orientalis, Vinca minor, Hammamelis.

Share and Enjoy

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Google Plus
  • Google
  • YahooBuzz
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS